UNI lands MN defensive lineman


CEDAR FALLS — Magnus Wright could not hide his smile when Northern Iowa offered him last Monday.

The talented defensive lineman out of Champlin, Minnesota, a northern suburb of Minneapolis, announced his commitment to UNI on Sunday, November 20—less than a week after visiting Cedar Falls.

“I have been looking at UNI for a while,” Wright said. “It was not just a new thing. I have always wanted to go there. I have had interest in the place. I started talking to them and, eventually, I got the offer.”

According to Wright, coaches’ recommendations first put UNI on his radar and put him on UNI’s radar.

Despite his early interest in becoming a Panther, Wright originally committed to Minnesota State University—Mankato, a Division II program, as an offensive lineman.

“A big part of the decision of decommitting from Mankato was because of the opportunity,” Wright said. “Not only is D1 a better opportunity, but I was committed to Mankato for offensive line. But, I feel like I can grow more at defensive line.”

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Wright explained that the biggest thing he likes about playing defensive line and the reason he wants to pursue it at the next level instead of offensive line lies in the gamesmanship of the position.

“I know some schemes and I know what the offensive linemen are thinking because I started my career as an offensive lineman,” Wright said. “It is easy for me to counter their moves because I know so much about their moves or what they are trying to do and what they expect out of me.”

At 6-foot-3, 290 pounds, Wright added that he feels he fits best on the interior of the defensive line at nose tackle or defensive tackle, but noted that he is ready for anything.

UNI’s ability to develop talent along the defensive line served as one major factor in Wright’s early interest in the Panthers.

“Not only are they only benefitting from me as a player, but I get to learn so much,” Wright said. “I get to develop my strengths and work on my weaknesses…[UNI fans] are going to see someone who never quits, someone who has the wit and someone who brings everything they can to the table.”

Wright remained committed to the Mavericks until earning an offer from UNI as a defensive lineman while visiting the program on November 14.

“I was trying to hold my smile back a little bit,” Wright said. “I did not want to cheese in front of the coach. He told me ‘You don’t have to hide your smile man. I know you are happy.’ Yeah, I was happy…I couldn’t wait to break the news to my mom. I knew she was going to be excited.”

In his senior season at Champlin Park High School, Wright amassed 35 total tackles, four tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks and a forced fumble. He also earned a spot on the North team in the 2022 Minnesota High School All-Star Football Game on December 10.


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